'Beast from the East' sparks red alert snow warning for Ireland

Breaking- Met Eireann upgrades Laois to Status Orange ahead of Beast from the East blizzard

Breaking- Met Eireann upgrades Laois to Status Orange ahead of Beast from the East blizzard

It is the third day of disruption caused by heavy snowfall, with thousands of schools closed and roads rendered impassable.

Forecasters in the United Kingdom have warned "freezing rain" could result from the same weather event that has led to a Status Red Weather warning in Ireland. The temperatures on Saturday night will be very low again, down to -5C Met Éireann said.

The roads in Ireland have also been affected, with many routes completely blocked by the snow - leading to suspended bus routes and huge tailbacks of traffic.

"We are not in a position to recover you", the force tweeted.

The HSE has cancelled all out-patient hospital appointments and non-urgent surgeries planned for Friday.

The move would result in 116,000 children not being able to make it to school and this would have a "domino effect", forcing schools to close and parents to stay home from work.

Gusts of up to 60mph could also bring "blizzard-like conditions". So it seems 1908 really was a winter (and late spring) wonderland - and we shouldn't grumble too much about the disruption we're facing today.

There were a number of limited Irish Rail, Luas and Dart services throughout the morning but these will cease by lunchtime.

Glasgow Airport said there would be no flights until 11am, while Edinburgh Airport tweeted to say most airlines had cancelled flights from there until lunchtime. However, British Red Cross emergency response volunteers were at the airport supplying bedding for up to 100 people in case they were stranded overnight.

In Paris on Wednesday night, 20 regional lawmakers spent the night outdoors in the capital to call attention to the situation of homeless people. Do not be out there from 4pm (Thursday evening).

Gardai state that forecasters predict the nation is to be hit with blizzard like conditions with zero visability later tonight which will extend countrywide.

"Temps will remain below freezing for the day".

The strong storm winds will continue off the south coast bringing the risk of coastal flooding there.

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